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Minister of Agriculture Jose Mai pays tribute to Belizean farmers for providing food for our tables ensuring food security

Posted: Friday, March 22, 2024. 6:32 pm CST.

Minister Jose Mai visits passion fruit farm in Monkey River in November, 223 – Photo Credit: MAFSE

By Rubén Morales Iglesias: Saying food security is action, Minister Jose Mai saluted the Belizean farmers at the beginning of his presentation during the Budget Debate in the House of Representatives on Thursday.

“Being a farmer is for the bold only,” Minister Mai said in paying tribute to the Belizean farmers for ensuring our food security.

“We can no longer take food production or food security for granted,” Mai said, noting that climate change and the Covid-19 pandemic made us realize the importance of food security.

“That is what led the Ministry of Agriculture, Food Security, and Enterprise (MAFSE) to shift into high gear, to switch pathways and to accelerate the pace to ensure that Belizeans have access to food, but not any food, quality food, affordable food.”

Minister Mai emphasized the fact that food security entails hard work.

“Food security is a verb. It’s not words; it’s actions, it’s hard work, it’s perseverance, challenges and investments,” the Agriculture Minister said.

“And it is for that reason, Madam Speaker, that I must salute every farmer, every producer in this country. It is because of them that we have food on our table daily. It is because of them that we earn valuable foreign exchange. It is because of them that we have employment in the rural communities, and it’s because of them that we have income for our families.

“We truly appreciate and respect the farmers. We honour you.”

BBN File Photo

Mai said that the Government’s ‘from farm to table’ plan is a success due to the farmers of Belize.

“It is no secret that agriculture is a challenging one,” Mai said.

“Being a farmer is for the bold and the bold only, the courageous and the risk takers.

“At a time when we are faced with rising costs of inputs, outbreaks of major pests and diseases, threats from hurricanes and other natural disasters, extended drought, other climate change and accompanying uncertainties, market instability, and other challenges, I must take off my hat to salute all the farmers in our country.

“From the cane farmers in Orange Walk, Corozal, and Cayo, to the rice farmers in Toledo and Blue Creek, and from the corn producers in Spanish Lookout to the vegetable farmers in Bomba and Nago Bank, all Women Farmers who we are highlighting during Women’s Month, to the young farmers in the high schools across the country participating in the school gardens, and finally to those in the villages, towns, and cities doing a little backyard gardening.”

 

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